GHSA Soccer State Championships: Tuesday Recap

Day 1 of the GHSA Soccer State Championships crowned the Class A Private and Public boys and girls state champions Tuesday at McEachern’s Cantrell Stadium and Mercer’s Five Star Stadium. The Pinecrest Academy girls were making their third-straight finals appearance and held on for a 1-0 victory over defending state champion Holy Innocents’ to take the Class A Private in the McEachern opener. Ivey Crain scored the deciding goal with 10:38 left in the first half before Pinecrest Academy was able to hoist the program’s first-ever state crown. Holy Innocents’ entered the finals with a 14-game win-streak and had outscored its previous 13 opponents 59-0, including a 26-0 goals advantage through the first four rounds of the state playoffs. Pinecrest Academy lost to the Golden Bears’ 3-1 in overtime in last year’s finals and finishes its historic season with a 18-2 overall record.

Class A Private


Atlanta International 5, Athens Academy 3

Atlanta International (19-0-2) overcame an early 1-0 deficit and capitalized on two PK’s to open up a 4-2 halftime lead, before closing out its undefeated season and winning its first state title since 2015. The Eagles outscored their previous four playoff opponents 27-0 and Athens Academy entered the matchup boasting a 16-game winning streak with a 102-12 scoring advantage in the same span. Rodrigo Vega gave Athens Academy its only lead of the game with his first half goal, but the Eagles answered with a 3-0 run before Athens Academy cut the deficit to 3-2 with 6:25 left in the half. Atlanta International grew the lead to 5-2 with 38:23 left in the game and Athens Academy scored its final goal with 7:50 left.

Class A Public


Dalton Academy 4, Drew Charter 2

Dalton Academy jumped out to a 3-0 halftime lead to clinch its first-ever state title on Tuesday. The program played its first full GHSA season last year and went 3-10. The Pumas took a 1-0 halftime lead in their regular season meeting with Drew Charter on March 17 that ended in a 1-1 tie, and in Tuesday’s winner-take-all rematch, the Pumas hit full stride early on with a triage of goals by Adrian Granados, Christian Cuna and Andy Reynoso in the opening 14:22 of the game. Dalton Academy teammate Milver Carillo Perez added the Pumas’ final goal to close out the victory after Drew Charter’s Jack Anderson and Jaden Causey each scored for the Eagles. Dalton Academy held Drew Charter to four shots in the game and did not allow a shot on goal for the first 10 minutes of the action. Dalton Academy finishes its historic season with a 18-2 overall record, while Drew Charter closes out the year 12-2.


Social Circle 6, Commerce 4 2OT

In the girls Class A Public finals, Social Circle avenged its only loss of the season with a thrilling 6-4 overtime win over Region 8 rival Commerce. Social Circle’s 5-4 loss to the Tigers in the regular season occurred on Feb. 7 and the Redskins carried a 19-game win-streak in to Tuesday’s winner-take-all rematch. Commerce’s Chloe Diaz scored just 1:37 into the game to put the Tigers up 1-0 and teammate Ivy Tolbert added a pair of first half goals to keep Commerce up 3-2 at the half following two first half goals by Peyton Brook that kept Social Circle within striking distance. Alana Ferguson tied it up 3-3 at the 12:25 mark in second half, but Diaz answered and completed the hat-trick to put Commerce back up 4-3 (28:50). Not to be outdone, Brooks forced overtime (4-4) with the equalizer, and her own hat-trick, before netting her fourth goal of the game, following a Tess Preston goal, to seal the victory in double overtime.


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